Ducati & Squadra Alpina Safety Team
Road racing – on real-world streets – has always had a certain allure to it. Not just because of the risk – or skill and bravery of the racers – but because it’s an every man’s form of racing. That’s what has always set apart races like Pikes Peak International Hill Climb and the Isle of Man TT. In any given year, it could be the rider next door who toiled away in secret that walks away with the trophy.
But there is more to a race than just the hope of winning. It takes times, effort, and dedication to create the slim opportunity of victory, and then it comes down to the proper training, as well as preparation. As we enter the 100th running of the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb (PPIHC), that’s exactly what we’re seeing develop between race organizers and Ducati – a comprehensive program to keep riders safe out on the mountain.
Dubbed “Squadra Alpina Safety Team,” the organizers and Ducati have created a “Race Smart” program to educate and mentor riders participating Pikes Peak. But they’ve tapped the best of the best when it came to two wheels, utilizing former PPIHC champions.
At the core of the group, current course record holder, Carlin Dunne (2012 – Ducati Multistrada 1200 S /9:52.819), will be leading the team made up of, Micky Dymond, and brothers Greg and Gary Tracy. All of which have earned top scores over the years. The Race Smart Program and the Pikes Peak Squadra Alpina Team is managed by Spider Grips principals Paul and Becca Livingston.
“For Ducati, it’s a matter of giving back to the mountain that has given us so much,” said Jason Chinnock, CEO of Ducati North America. “For our partners, it’s a tribute to the legacy and drama of motorcycle racing at Pikes Peak for the past century and a way to ensure that motorcycles will compete here for the next 100 years.”
The Pikes Peak International Hill Climb is the oldest and most venerable race we have in the US, let alone this side of the Atlantic. The course, which sees riders make their way up to the 14,115 ft. mountain peak, tests both rider and machine in every imaginable way. Initiatives like this are not new, in fact, the Isle of Man TT has a program for incoming riders with the same goals in mind: Keep riders and safe and keep competitors coming back.
This year’s Pikes Peak International Hill Climb will take place on June 26, 2016.
For more information about the Race Smart Program and Pikes Peak Squadra Alpina Team can be found at Ducati USA. Fans can also follow the safety team on Twitter @PPSquadraAlpina.